Whether you have a serious green thumb or simply like to keep your weeds at bay, you need a good pair of gloves any time you're digging around in the dirt. However, the best gardening gloves require certain features that you won't find with lesser gloves.
First of all, they need to be breathable. Gardening is hard work, and it often makes you hot and sweaty. Even when you're not outside under the blazing hot sun (which, let's face it, you often are), your hands still work up a sweat, so you want your gloves to have some sort of ventilating panel or component. This could be made of nylon, spandex, or another breathable material.
Second, you'll want gloves that are puncture-resistant. Unlike other work mitts, your gardening gloves need to protect you from thorns, as well as wayward branches, twigs, and other pointy objects. Tough materials like latex rubber and full-grain leather will help keep your skin from getting pricked.
Beyond that, it's great to have flexibility so you can move your hands with freedom and use your fingers with greater precision. Depending on your preferences, you may also want bonus features like finger claws, knuckle guards, or extra palm padding. To help you find the right pair, I've done some research and made a list of the best gardening gloves in a variety of different styles.
1. The Overall Best Gardening Gloves
What's great about them: These tough bamboo work gloves are exceptionally flexible, with an amazing "bare skin" feel that lands them at the top of the list as overall best. In fact, with more than 1,500 reviews, they have a virtual cult following on Amazon. In addition to being lightweight and breathable (which helps keeps your hands cool), they allow you to feel your plants with greater sensitivity and dexterity. They aren't considered puncture-proof like some of the others on this list, but they are abrasion-resistant with seamless construction that reduces chafing.
What fans say: "These are fantastic gloves. I NEVER wear gloves because they are always cumbersome and do not give me a feeling of getting the work done efficiently. These changed my thinking ... I’m completely satisfied that these gloves get the job done and will last more than one season! Love that these are made of bamboo and are eco friendly too. Great product."
- Available sizes: Small - XX-Large
2. The Best Gardening Gloves With Claws
What's great about them: If you like having extra digging and leveraging ability when you're gardening, these clawed garden gloves are just the ticket. Each glove features tough, ABS plastic claws at the tips of four fingers to provide built-in tools while you work. The robust latex material is both waterproof and puncture-resistant, and there's breathable, nylon knit on the back of the hands to offer ventilation.
What fans say: "I've ripped through the fingers of dozens of gloves and then I came across these 'claw' gloves. I'll never garden with regular gloves again. Or rake leaves. I can actually get some value out of a manicure now! Woo Hoo! Love them! And fast shipping too."
- Available sizes: One Size
3. The Best Leather Gardening Gloves
What's great about them: Constructed from high-quality, full-grain cowhide, these tough leather gardening gloves are the ultimate in terms of toughness and strength. The material is 1.2-millimeters thick, yet they're super pliable, so your hands have the flexibility they need to work. They feature a gunn cut, which showcases fine seams set back from the palm and a fully seamless back, offering increased comfort when moving your fingers. The wrists have elastic bands to block dirt, and reviewers say the fabric is exceptionally puncture- and abrasion-resistant. These gloves aren't as breathable as the other options, but they make up for it in added durability.
What fans say: "Excellent construction and immune to thorns, Ripped out pampas grass by hand and cleaned up sharp, thorny red raspberry patch, and no penetration."
- Available sizes: Medium - XX-Large
4. The Best Long Gardening Gloves
What's great about them: For folks who prefer gloves with full arms, these extra-long gardening gloves make a great choice. They feature gauntlet-style cuffs that go all the way to the elbows, along with stretchy spandex on the backs of the hands to offer enhanced freedom of movement, as well as breathability. Like the previous pick, they boast puncture-resistant leather, in addition to other materials. Best of all, they're super tough, with reinforced fingertips, sturdy knuckle guards, and palms outfitted with puncture-resistant padding.
What fans say: "I wanted to find some garden gloves that extended up to [the] elbows for extra protection. These gloves fit the bill perfectly! They also have a bit of elastic in them right around the wrist area which provides an extra bit of grip so the gloves don't just slip off as you are working. They are very sturdy; I expect they will hold up very well ... and I love the style and color as well!"
- Available sizes: Small - Large
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